Finding the time to pray together as a family can be a very powerful and rewarding experience for parents and their children. If praying for families is important, so is praying with your family! The Church highly encourages families to share a moment of spirituality. But why, and how to organize a time of prayer with your family?
“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” (Matthew 18: 20)
Prayer is the cornerstone of your spiritual life, and your relationship with God. Praying on your own helps you share an intimate dialogue with the Lord. Praying with a community is essential, as it helps you feel part of one body, and one Church.
As John Chrysostom described it in the IVth century, and as Pope Benedict reminds us, family is a “little domestic Church”.
Among other things, family prayer helps you:
Accompany your children by showing them and encouraging the practice of prayer. Children who learn to pray will grow to know that, no matter the path they choose to follow or life’s challenges, they can turn to their loving and merciful Father!
Share a special moment with them that completes and makes your own personal prayer time more meaningful. It is a moment of listening, of openness where parents and children can discover one another. We are all small before the Lord: parents can learn to show their vulnerable side to their children when praying. Children, in turn, learn to open their hearts and to trust freely by exploring this spiritual space.
The first step is to find the right time, and the right place that will allow you to clear your mind and fully experience this encounter with God.
The right place: for example, you can organize a space dedicated to prayer in a common room of your home (with a cross or an icon).
The right time: you can try to implement as well as you can a day or an hour dedicated to prayer, in the morning or evening for example. You can start this moment with a few symbolic gestures (lighting a candle, the signing of the cross, a song…)
This time of family prayer can be accompanied by a reading of the Daily Gospel. It is also important that you allow everyone to say a special prayer intention, which will be strengthened by the participation of others. Finally, you can invoke the patron saints of each family member and ask for their intercession, protection and prayers.
That said, Family prayer should be spontaneous: avoid setting too many rules, let your family and yourself go with the flow. Each family can find its own way of praying by exploring the possibilities: prayer time can be influenced by the seasons of the year, special celebrations, family events - and the creativity of each family member! As this prayer moment gives way for improvement, make sure that you stay open to change.
Here are some prayers that you can pray with your family.
“Father, we thank You for this day.
We humbly ask for your forgiveness if it did not fit Your expectations. Comfort us in our troubles. Even in our weaknesses, we thank You for the good moments of today, for the work accomplished, for the people we met, for listening to our prayers.
May the worries and the problems we encountered today lead us to trust more in You, to be more mindful of our carelessness, to improve our judgment, to temper our precipitations.
Bless the people we met today, and the work we accomplished. Thank you for silently accompanying us throughout the day and helping us reach the evening,
Help us forgive one another to live in Your peace.
Thank You for watching over this family and keeping it safe.
Discover other night prayers
“Lord Jesus, on this morning and for the rest of the day I open the door of my whole being to You. Come inhabit my body, soul, heart, senses, memory, joys and sorrows.
Lord Jesus, I welcome Your miraculous presence in all that I am, including my wounds and shortcomings.
I welcome Your presence in my worries and the troubles of today. Lord, I profess that Your love for me is eternal; You love me as Your child in spite of my weaknesses.
At the beginning of this day, I accept all this unconditional and divine love. Whatever happens today, I thank you for it. Like Your Apostle, Saint Paul, I proclaim “it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me” (Gal 2: 20).
Lord Jesus, You are now in my heart for the rest of this day. You see what I see. We are one, and I feel joy to know you are with me.”
Discover other morning prayers.
“Lord in heaven, hear my prayer, Keep me in your loving care. Be my guide in all I do. Bless all those who love me, too
Hozana is a social network designed to help you share a time of prayer with other Christians around the world. Discover the many spiritual programs on Hozana to assist you during prayer.